U.S. Medical Students Celebrate in NRMP Match Day 2013 Results Ceremonies Today

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In results released today for the largest residency Match in NRMP history, U.S. medical school students and other applicants learned where they will spend the next three-seven years of their medical careers. U.S. medical school seniors made up 16,390 of the 25,463 applicants who successfully matched to first-year residency positions.

“We attribute the rising number of U.S. students to three new medical schools graduating their first classes as well as enrollment expansions in existing medical schools.” --Mona M. Signer, Executive Director, NRMP

More U.S. medical school seniors have matched to primary care residency positions in the largest Main Residency Match® in NRMP history, according to new data released today by the National Resident Matching Program® (NRMP®). The number of U.S. students choosing primary care—internal medicine, family medicine, and pediatrics—rose by almost 400 over last year. These individuals are among the 17,487 graduating seniors who participated in the annual rite of passage known as The Match and who are celebrating today at Match Day ceremonies across the country.

NRMP Match Facts
According to NRMP Executive Director Mona M. Signer, for the first time ever, the total number of Match registrants topped 40,000, including almost 1,000 more U.S. seniors. “We attribute the rising number of U.S. students to three new medical schools graduating their first classes, as well as enrollment expansions in existing medical schools,” Signer said.

NRMP reported that in addition to students from U.S. medical schools, the 2013 Match included:

  • 2,677 students and graduates of osteopathic (D.O. degree-granting) schools—an increase of 317 over 2012, and up more than 600 over five years.
  • 5,095 U.S. citizen students/graduates from international medical schools (IMGs)—816 more than in 2012, and up more than 1,700 over five years.
  • 7,568 non-U.S. citizen students/graduates of international medical schools (IMGs)—740 more individuals over 2012.

U.S. medical school seniors made up 16,390 of the 25,463 applicants who successfully matched to first-year residency positions. With a match rate that always exceeds 90 percent, they are the most successful applicants in The Match.

Notable this year, however, are the results for U.S. citizen IMGs and foreign-national IMGs, whose match rates increased by four and seven percentage points respectively. The overall match rate for applicants to first-year positions rose by one percentage point to 74.1 percent.

Of the applicants who matched, 78.8 percent of U.S. seniors, and 78.8 percent of independent applicants, matched to one of their top three choice programs. More than half of U.S. seniors and almost half of independent applicants matched to their first choice.

Applicants who did not match to a residency position will try to obtain one of the 1,041 unfilled positions, most of which are in the NRMP Supplemental Offer and Acceptance Program℠(SOAP)℠. During SOAP, the NRMP makes available the locations of unfilled positions so that unmatched applicants can apply for them using the AAMC Electronic Residency Application Service® (ERAS).

Specialty Trends
The total number of positions offered in The Match was 29,171, an increase of 2,399 over last year and an all-time high. “The significant increase in positions was due to a change in NRMP policy that requires Match-participating programs to register and attempt to fill all positions in The Match,” said Signer. This year 1,000 more internal medicine positions were placed in The Match, along with 297 more in family medicine and 141 more in pediatrics.

Match result information can be an indicator of career interests among U.S. medical school seniors. Among the notable trends this year:

  • 3,135 U.S. seniors matched to internal medicine, an increase of 194 over last year.
  • 1,837 U.S. seniors matched to pediatrics, an increase of 105 over last year.
  • Family medicine matched 1,355 U.S. seniors, 33 more than last year. More than 95 percent of family medicine positions were filled.
  • Emergency medicine programs offered 1,744 positions, 76 more than last year, and filled all but three of them.
  • Anesthesiology programs offered 1,653 positions, 177 more than last year, and filled all but 62 of them.
  • Specialties with at least 50 positions in The Match that filled at least 80 percent of positions with U.S. seniors were dermatology, emergency medicine, medicine-pediatrics, neurological surgery, orthopedic surgery, otolaryngology, radiation oncology, general surgery, and plastic surgery.

Couples in the Match
This year, The Match included 935 couples, an all-time high. Participants who enter The Match as a couple agree to have their rank order lists of preferred residency programs linked so they can try to match to programs suited to their preferences, such as within the same geographic area. This year, 868 couples matched to their residency program preferences.

How the Match Works
Conducted annually by the NRMP, The Match uses a computerized mathematical algorithm to align the preferences of applicants with the preferences of residency program directors in order to fill the training positions available at U.S. teaching hospitals. Research on the NRMP algorithm was a basis for Dr. Alvin Roth’s receipt of the 2012 Nobel Prize in Economics.

For more information, visit http://www.nrmp.org after 1:00 p.m. EDT on Friday, March 15, 2013.

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The National Resident Matching Program® (NRMP®) is a private, non-profit organization established in 1952 at the request of medical students to provide an orderly and fair mechanism for matching the preferences of applicants for U.S. residency positions with the preferences of residency program directors. In addition to the Main Residency Match, the NRMP conducts matches for more than 40 subspecialties. For more information, contact NRMP at 1-866-653-NRMP (6767) or visit http://www.nrmp.org. For interviews, please email cherbert@nrmp.org.

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Claire Herbert

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